Encouraging Critical Way of Thinking through Documentary Film, Jihad Selfie

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Teuku Akbar Maulana (in red shirt), HI UNAIR lecturer Ahmad Safril Mubah (in white shirt), and Noor Huda Ismail (in black shirt) in a discussion in Soetandyo Hall FISIP UNAIR, Wednesday, September 8. (Photo: Luthfi Al Jufri)

UNAIR NEWS – The public must still remember, some Indonesian students supported and joined Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS) few months ago. It was a problem, why did they support and join the terrorizing group?

To discuss the problem, CSGS (Cakra Studi Global Strategis) Lecture Series invited Noor Huda Ismail and Teuku Akbar Maulana. Through a discussion held in Soetandyo Hall FISIP UNAIR on Thursday September 8, both explained through a documentary film titled “Jihad Selfie”.

The film covers the personal experience of Teuku Akbar Maulana and his friends who was going to join ISI through information spread in Facebook. But he failed to join the group as he was not permitted by his parents.

At this point, Noor Huda saw a story of a young individual who is distressed by his bad relationship with his parents and friends. It was a period of finding his true self and it was used by a terrorism network to recruit their followers.

“When my friends are going for Syria, I called my mom but she did not give her permission. So I did not join them,” said the student who got senior high school scholarship to study in Turkey.

Akbar shared his friend story who had joined ISIS and was already in military training by holding an AK-47. For them, it was a cool thing and some even uploaded a photo in their social media account with pride.

“My friends looked cool, taking a photo with some firearms in facebook, liked by ukhti-ukhti,” said Akbar.

This short story of Akbar convinced Noor Huda to make a documentary. Even though he is not a great filmmaker, he had a message conveyed through the film. Noor Huda wanted to show the other side of ISIS recruitment, where a lot of youngsters were the subjects of it.

There are many parties who voluntarily helped the film production, either in Turkey, Australia, or in some cities in Indonesia. “The cost of the film making was not calculated, it was based on trust and teamwork,” said the man who got his master degree on International Security Studies of St. Andrews University, England.

According to Noor Huda, the objective of the film is to encourage critical way of thinking. That to be a jihadist, people do not have to join a terrorist group. Loving and obeying parents are also a form of jihad.

“I hope everyone who enjoys the film can think critically, and then discuss it together,” said the founder of Yayasan Prasasti Perdamaian. “The requirement to watch this film is having a discussion after it,” he said. (*)

Author: AhallaTsauro
Editor : Dilan Salsabila

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